Showing posts from March, 2017

Sermon by guest preacher President Matthew Harrison--follow podcast link

Aloha readers, yesterday we had the special honor of hosting Rev. Dr. Matthew Harrison as the guest preacher and Bible study leader at Emmanuel Lutheran Church. Pastor Harrison is the president of The Lutheran Church Missouri Synod (LCMS), the national church body of which our congregation is a member. Thank you for bringing the Word of God to us, Pastor Harrison! Since I don't have a manuscript of his sermon, I refer you here to my podcast , where you can listen to an audio recording here . (The first link is to my podcast home page, second is to the specific sermon). Joshua Schneider

Sermon on Luke 11:14-28, for the 3rd Sunday in Lent (1 YR), "Christus Victor"

Grace, mercy, and peace to you from God our Father and from our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, Amen. Early Christians found various ways to speak about the redemption that Jesus Christ won for mankind. They followed the descriptions in Scripture. “What was the center of Jesus’ redeeming work?”, they asked. Of course the cross of Jesus had to be central. But what exactly was happening there? A transaction? A tragedy? A judgment? A battle? An example? The most common description is that Jesus was our perfect, innocent substitute, facing God’s judgment against sin. A similar picture is Jesus as the ransom for our human bondage to sin. A third description found more in hymns than in theology books, is called the Christus Victor Theory . Christ is the Victorious champion who destroys sin, death, and the devil. It’s a more triumphal picture—but really all three images together describe facets of the one reality that Jesus has redeemed us from the power of sin, death, and the devil. One

Crumbs from my Master's Table

A new hymn to go along with this Sunday's Gospel reading: Crumbs from my Master’s Table Text: Joshua V. Schneider Tune suggestion: LSB 915 “Today Your Mercy Calls Us” (Anthes) Meter: 76 76 D 1. Crumbs from my Master’s Table Are truly all I need No lavish feast is able To free my soul indeed. Lord, break this sin’s oppression Lord, take Your child to You That we with glad expression May serve and honor You. 2. My heart with hunger yearning A taste of mercy seeks I felt Your back was turning As tears ran down my cheeks But then You showed your favor! Your countenance did shine At once I knew my Savior, Your grace was truly mine! 3. My faith clings to no other Than Jesus Christ my Lord. God’s Son became my brother My life with God restored. He came with God’s forgiveness My sins all to erase This Lord and host so gracious Prepared for me a place. 4. Kneel at the Master’s Table, His feast before you spread Our Lord alone is able To feed

Sermon on Matthew 15:21-28, for the 2nd Sunday in Lent (1 YR), "Unforgettable Faith"

Grace, mercy, and peace to you from God our Father and our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Amen. The Gospel reading today, with the Canaanite woman coming to Jesus for help, may stir a variety of emotions in us. Sympathy for the woman and her daughter; confusion or even shock at Jesus’ initial cold reaction. And probably amazement at the woman’s unforgettable faith in pursuing Jesus’ help till she received it. But one emotion might be absent that was present among Jesus’ disciples and the original listeners. Resentment. You see, she was a Canaanite—not a Jew. The shadowy history of her ancestors included lewd and barbaric practices connected to idol worship. That’s why God drove them out of Israel. That stigma hung over her. The disciples thought she was a nuisance, and wanted to be rid of her, and assumed Jesus would too. She followed them around, crying out loudly, “Have mercy on me, O Lord, Son of David!” But the most puzzling part of the story is why Jesus seemingly played alo

Sermon on Genesis 3:1-21, for the 1st Sunday in Lent (1 Year Lectionary), "The Conscience under sin"

Grace, mercy, and peace to you from God our Father and from our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, Amen. Genesis 3 is one of the foundational events in the Bible. We often call it “The Fall” or the “Fall into Sin”. It was a turning point in very early human history. God had just completed creation, and Adam and Eve were in perfect harmony with Him. They tended the Garden of Eden; had access to the Tree of Life. But they had one command: to avoid the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. If they ate of it they would surely die. But how quickly paradise came unraveled, as the devil whispered doubt into Eve’s ear: “ Did God actually say, ‘You shall not eat of any tree in the garden’? ” And doubts of God’s Word and commands have plagued humanity ever since. If we could only trust that the wise and all powerful God actually knows and tells us, His creatures, what is best for us, we would be infinitely better off. But ever since Eve first gave room for that doubt, and began to agree wit